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Keep Your Kids’ Smiles Healthy with Simple Preventive Care

February may be known predominantly as the month when Cupid flies into town, but that is not the only cause for celebration. This month is also Children’s Dental Health Month, a special chance to be grateful for your kids’ great oral health, but also to teach them about how to keep their teeth and gums healthy. If you want your children to enjoy a lifetime of oral health, February is a great chance to review the basics of dental hygiene and why regular dental checkups with a children’s dentist are important. That way they can grow up knowing just how to care for their priceless pearly whites!

General Guidelines for Great Oral Health

  • You already know it’s important to teach your kids great dental hygiene, but you might not know just when or how to go about it. Here are some general guidelines:
  • from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research.
  • As soon as your baby’s first tooth appears, you can begin gently brushing, though there is no need for toothpaste yet.
  • You can also wipe out your baby’s mouth with a soft and clean rag, after feedings. This can help prevent dental decay from starting as the teeth begin to erupt.
  • At approximately age one your child will be ready for his or her first dental checkup. This is a great opportunity to talk with your pediatric dentist about the best techniques for caring for those precious baby teeth, now and moving forward.
  • Around the age your kids are ready to learn to tie their shoes, is when they should be adept enough to begin brushing their teeth alone, with adult supervision, of course.
  • This is also a good time to talk to the dentist about the benefits of sealants, like fluoride, which can help prevent dental decay.
  • For more information about Children’s Dental Health Month, including printable worksheets designed for parents of children at various ages, visit the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research’s website.